Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada
His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, is the Commander-in-Chief of Canada. In this role, he is responsible for appointing the Chief of the Defence Staff on the recommendation of the Prime Minister, awarding military honours, presenting colours to Canadian Armed Forces regiments, approving new military badges and insignia and signing commission scrolls. He also visits with Canadian Armed Forces personnel and their families at home and abroad.
Upon appointment, the Commander-in-Chief receives the Canadian Forces Decoration and becomes a Colonel of the Governor General’s Foot Guards, the Governor General’s Horse Guards and the Canadian Grenadier Guards, as well as Chancellor and Commander of the Order of Military Merit.
As Commander-in-Chief, the Governor General may, in this capacity, wear a military uniform at events. He wears a flag/general officer uniform with a special flag/general sleeve braid, embellished with the Governor General’s badge, and a large embroidered Governor General’s badge on the shoulder straps or boards.
His Excellency was installed as Canada’s 28th Governor General on October 1, 2010. He is The Queen’s representative in Canada and exercises the duties of Head of State.
For further details, visit the Governor General’s website at www.gg.ca or follow GGDavidJohnston and RideauHall on Facebook and Twitter.
David Johnston began his professional career as an assistant professor in the Faculty of Law at Queen’s University in 1966, moving to the Law Faculty at the University of Toronto in 1968. He became dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of Western Ontario in 1974. In 1979, he was named principal and vice-chancellor of McGill University, and in July 1994, he returned to the McGill Faculty of Law as a full-time professor. In June 1999, he became the fifth president of the University of Waterloo.
Mr. Johnston has served on many provincial and federal task forces and committees. He has also served onthe boards of a number of companies, including Arise, CGI, Fairfax, and Masco. He was president of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada and of the Conférence des recteurs et des principaux des universités du Québec. He was the founding chair of the National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy, chaired the federal government’s Information Highway Advisory Council, and served as the first non-American chair of the Board of Overseers at Harvard University. He is the author or co-author of two dozen books, holds honorary doctorates from over a dozen universities, and has been awarded the Order of Canada (Companion).
Mr. Johnston holds an LL.B. from Queen’s University (1966), an LL.B. from the University of Cambridge (1965), and an AB from Harvard University (1963). While at Harvard, he was twice selected for the All-American hockey team and is a member of Harvard’s Athletic Hall of Fame. His academic specializations include securities regulation, information technology and corporate law.
He was born in Sudbury, Ontario, and is married to Sharon Johnston. They have five adult daughters and nine grandchildren.
Sworn in on October 1, 2010, His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston is the 28th governor general since Confederation.
- Chief of the Defence Staff Change of Command Ceremony (October 2012)
- 150th Anniversary of the Black Watch Royal Highland Regiment (September 2012)
- Official Canadian Ceremony at the Square du Canada - Dieppe (August 2012)
- Order of Military Merit Investiture Ceremony - 40th Anniversary (June 2012)
- Remembrance Ceremony in Honour of the 95th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge (April 2012)
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